Covid-19 Impact on Biostimulant in the Agriculture and Animal Feed Industry

Covid-19 Impact on Biostimulant in the Agriculture and Animal Feed Industry

  • Agriculture And Animal Feed
  • Jul 06, 2020

Since last year, the COVID-19 outbreak took place in Wuhan, China, and then it rapidly spread all across the world. This outbreak is negatively affected global economic growth which is beyond anything experienced in nearly a century. All sectors in the market have experienced its impact from both sides, that is, the supply side and the demand side.

The sectors which have experienced COVID-19 impact on the agricultural level are agriculture, food supplies, and animal production sectors. Till April 2020, there was no medicine or vaccine available which has consequently resulted in lockdown and reduction in the production following social distancing measures. Under the agriculture sector, biostimulant which helps in the growth of the plants and is one of the booming products in the market which helps in increasing the crop and food productivity has experienced impact due to the current COVID-19 pandemic.

The biostimulant includes all components such as seaweeds, amino acids, and protein hydrolysates, among others. These components are prepared by using certain sources that do not contain chemicals. Due to which the food products which are produced in the agricultural field do not cause health issues after consumption. Due to these major benefits and changes in people’s lifestyle and an increase in health consciousness, it is becoming important in the fertilizer sector. This is found to be an alternative to chemical fertilizers and also farmers are now more inclined towards safe and harmless products. But recently, due to COVID-19 pandemic, supply and demand chain got hit badly and this has led into a reduction in demand for the particular products in the market.

PRE COVID-19 IMPACT

During the start month of 2020, the pandemic has resulted in lockdown mostly all over the world. The lockdown resulted in disruption in the supply and demand chain. The agriculture sector has to suffer from various problems such as labor unavailability, inability to access markets, and lack in the availability of fertilizers, among others.

The supply chain includes transportation which was disturbed and hence demands for fertilizers if it was there; it was not fulfilled by the manufacturer. On the other hand, fertilizer manufacturers were facing issues in collecting raw materials. Lack of raw material availability has led the biostimulant manufacturer in reducing the production of fertilizers. Along with this many manufacturing facilities were made shut to maintain the social distancing which decreases the production of fertilizers that includes biostimulants as well.

For instance,

  • In February 2020, Eastman Chemical Company which is a fertilizer company has took decision to shut its manufacturing facility based Wuhan, China, the epicenter of the coronavirus outbreak.

POST COVID-19 IMPACT

As time passed, demand for the products started increasing as food products are essential product hence various manufacturing company started taking decisions in order to provide their product’s in market. Also governing authority has provided permission or unlocked the lockdown which has helped the companies to deliver the product to the famers.

For instance,

  • In March 2020, SICIT Group and Syngenta entered into collaboration to promote their product and also focused on more sustainable agriculture. This collaboration was done mainly on focus for collagen based biostimulants which is a booming product in market in fertilizer sector. This in future may help the company to strengthen their footprint in the market.
  • In March 2020, Valagro said that they will keep producing and manufacturing products while keeping health and safety measures in mind for their workers.

As such there was no major impact on the fertilizers such as bio stimulant. The pandemic has affected badly during the start of the year 2020, where manufacturers had shut their facilities and also lack in the supply. Further, the facilities were made reopen with strict measures and reopening in the transportation facilities have brought an opportunity for the biostimulant manufacturer to again grow in market. This is because the agricultural commodities are the essential products which are highly in demand around the globe. Biostimulant is playing a major role because it is fulfilling the increasing population’s demand in the market.

BIOSTIMULANTS MANUFACTURERS: PERSPECTIVE & INITIATIVES

The outbreak of COVID-19 has brought world to a halt where each and every industry has got an impact of it. This crisis has brought to an unexpected situation through which everyone is going through. With such unscrupulous situation, everyone is trying to get over of it. In all, the product industry has fallen badly due to COVID-19 in start of 2020. But rising support from several companies as well as governments are helping the industry to rebuild the position again in market.

Various companies and brands have shown a significant growth in their first quarter revenue considering the COVID-19 as challenging and have stated that the second quarter of the company will be quite challenging in terms of organic growth of revenue and the factor influencing such as currency exchange rate uncertainty, shortage of raw material and their supply chain,

For instance,

"FMC delivered another quarter of above-market growth, against an industry-leading comparison from last year, which increased up to 7%.”

"We effectively navigated the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic during the quarter. Our global operations, supply chain and commercial teams worked diligently to ensure customers had timely access to critical crop protection products through the quarter. Despite forecasting solid organic growth, we believe the second quarter will present the most challenging and uncertain conditions related to COVID-19 and currencies. FX will be a strong headwind at a time of year when price increases are the most difficult to implement,"

- Pierre Brondeau, CEO of FMC Corporation.

Higher lack in the transportation of the fertilization to the growers is one of the major cause of uncertainty in food production, hence Yara Company have committed to fulfill the need of the fertilization globally and taken initiative to reach their client through specific transportation all over world.

“Yara can contribute to increasing food security in vulnerable communities. The Action Africa initiative has many milestones to come and I am convinced that we have only seen the beginning. The total impact of this will go far beyond what we first envisioned.”

- Pablo Barrera Lopez, Executive Vice President Strategy & Communications., Yara International

The shortage of the growth promoters and fertilizers have hit hard the agricultural sector, due to the long time lockdown, shortage in supply chain of the raw materials and lack of transportation intrastate and ban of international travels have disrupted the distribution of fertilizers to the farmers.

For instance,

“Shortage of fertilizers, veterinary medicines and other input has affected agricultural production.”

- United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization, QU Dongyu

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